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Revisiting Nokia 2.3 - A budget device with good build

OPPO
Huawei
After a few months of using the Nokia 2.3 as our all-around secondary device, here's how it holds up.
Nokia 2.3 Revisited - A budget device with strong battery performance and premium build
How did the Nokia 2.3 hold up?

Build Quality/Design

Premium feel and look
Premium feel and look

Even now, Nokia 2.3 still has one of the best build and design for a device under PHP 8K. It has a textured polycarbonate back panel with a metal frame that gives it a premium feel.

The notched screen does not feel outdated yet but with punch-hole cutouts being more commonplace, its just a matter of time when notches become a thing of the past.

Performance

It has an improved overall performance
It has an improved overall performance

Nokia 2.3 received a number of patches and updates since we started using it back in March. There are a few huge differences that I want to point out in terms of the overall performance in different tasks.

In terms of navigation and web browsing, it became snappier after a few updates. However, it is still more ideal to use the Lite or Go versions of some apps it is available just to manage the 2GB RAM more efficiently.

One surprise came in the form of the Nokia 2.3's performance with Mobile Legends. Out of the box, our unit struggled to run it even on all low. But after the patches and updates, it runs smoother to the point that we can honestly say that you can play Mobile Legends and similar games comfortably albeit in lower graphics settings.

In terms of YouTube and Netflix, 720p did not bother me as much as we expected it to. We were able to finish some episodes and videos without ever thinking that I'd rather watch this on 1080p.
The battery of Nokia 2.3
The battery of Nokia 2.3

Battery life remained consistent for me as well. Being a secondary device, a single charge of the 4,000mAh battery lasts 2 to 3 days.

Cameras

The dual cameras
The dual cameras

One of the disappointments I had was the lack of a Night Mode since it was previously mentioned in its marketing material. The dual rear camera setup of 13MP f/2.2 + 2MP with LED flash can perform decently with ample to great lighting. However, even with dimmer lights to low light situations, it struggles.
Daylight shot with main camera
With HDR
With HDR
Night shot
Night shot
Low light shot
Low light shot

For selfies, the 5MP f/2.4 sensor does its job well in daylight and bright lighting but struggles in low-light to dark situations. Colors do pop with ample lighting.

At night though, noise is really noticeable as seen in the samples. It has Auto HDR, fill light flash, Motion Mode, and Video Mode.

Overall, the cameras are still good to have but this won't be the primary reason to get this phone.

Nokia 2.3 Specs

Display: 6.2-inch 2.5D curved TFT screen w/ HD+ 1520 x 720 resolution at 271 ppi
CPU: 2.0GHz 64-bit Helio A22 quad-core processor
GPU: PowerVR GE8300
RAM: 2GB
ROM: 32GB expandable via microSD card slot up to 512GB
Back Camera: 13MP f/2.2 w/ AF + 2MP w/ LED flash
Selfie Camera: 5MP f/2.4
Battery: 4,000mAh
OS: Android 10
Connectivity: WiFi 802.11 b/g/n, 700MHz 4G LTE, Bluetooth 5.0, FM Radio, OTG, GPS, GLONASS, dual SIM slots.
Sensors: Accelerometer, light, proximity
Others: Face unlock, Google Assistant button, Colors: cyan green, charcoal
Dimensions: 157.69 x 75.41 x 8.68 mm
Weight: 183 g
Price: PHP 5,990

Our thoughts

For PHP 5,990, the Nokia 2.3 delivers a sleek design and sturdy build that feels premium for the price. It also has a pretty nice looking display.

However, it leaves a lot to be desired in terms of the specs and cameras. The under PHP 7K market is teeming with contenders and it can be hard for Nokia 2.3 to stand out.

With a price cut though, Nokia 2.3 can be highly recommended.
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